The son of the late journalist and politician Najib al-Rayyis (1898-1952), Riyad al-Rayyis was born in Damascus in 1937 and started his career as a journalist covering conflicts in Vietnam, Greece, Cyprus, and Lebanon.
He is perhaps best known for his “Winds of Change” books; his Guerrillas for Palestine was published in English translation by Dunia Nahas, but is now out of print.
He founded his publishing house in London in 1986, and moved it to Beirut in the early 1990s. The house published a wide range of classic and contemporary works, including books by Mahmoud Darwish, Fawaz Traboulsi, Zakaria Tamer, Rachid Daif, May Menassa, and Yahya Hasan Jabir.
I'm sad to learn of the passing of Lebanese publisher & author Riyad Najib Rayyis (1937-2020). When I first started reading Arabic books in the 1990s my brother suggested his Winds of Change series. I'm better informed about our region thanks to him. الله يرحم الأستاذ رياض pic.twitter.com/pPW5JYVsIg— سلطان سعود القاسمي (@SultanAlQassemi) September 27, 2020